Ex-Uber Employees Get Behind Scheme to Decentralize Ridesharing

UTC by Tolu Ajiboye · 3 min read
Ex-Uber Employees Get Behind Scheme to Decentralize Ridesharing
Photo: Depositphotos

Startup software developer DEC recently generated $9 million to decentralize ridesharing and provide a seamless alternative to Uber.

A number of former Uber employees are getting behind an initiative to decentralize ridesharing, according to reports.

The Block reports that software development company Decentralized Engineering Corporation (DEC) raised $9 million to decentralize ridesharing on the Solana blockchain. The startup generated the funds in a seed round co-led by Foundation Capital and Road Capital, with several noteworthy angel investors also participating. Among these individual backers are several ex-Uber employees, such as its former general manager for New York, Josh Mohrer. In addition, former early Uber employee Ryan McKillen and Flexport founder Ryan Petersen are also among the investing fold.

How DEC Plans to Decentralize Ridesharing Compares to Uber Formula

DEC’s projected decentralized ridesharing application, called Teleport, will use the platform’s newly-built Solana-backed protocol to function. Called Trip, this protocol can reportedly be used for several applications for mobility or unrestricted movement. Shedding further light on Trip’s operability and how it compares favorably with Uber, DEC CEO and founder Paul Bohm, explained:

“You can have multiple rideshare operating companies and multiple clients connecting to that same network and working together in creating this marketplace… As opposed to Uber, which is a singular monopoly that no one can compete [with], no one can build on, no one can innovate and change.”

The Trip network operates as open source and offers all the instrumental components of ridesharing services to all network participants. Such key services include dispatch, payments, background checks as well as dispute resolution.

DEC Decentralized Ridesharing Initiative to Onboard Smaller Players

Reports also suggest that Bohm seeks to incorporate lesser-known ridesharing purveyors into Trip. By doing this, he looks to create an enabling environment for these smaller platforms to make a play for Uber’s perceived hegemony. Bohm said:

“Why would the drivers keep investing into Uber’s ecosystem? When they could actually all collaborate and build their own ecosystem where they have ownership over what they’re doing.”

Individuals will be able to access a marketplace for ride requests on Teleport. According to Bohm, although the San Francisco-based mobility service provider remains outstanding, Teleport offers an arguably more seamless user experience. According to Bohm, Teleport offers users an avenue to pay using credit cards and crypto. In his own words, this operability development is “relatively new to Web3.”

Bohm appears set to demo his Teleport app at a number of conferences this year, such as the Solana Breakpoint conference in Lisbon. The DEC CEO, who will also present at the Art Basel in Miami, cites such exhibitions as necessary due to high demand and difficulty in securing rides. “I wanted to show people this is real, it works right now,” he explains.

Using its freshly-generated capital, DEC will also expand the service to other events. Furthermore, the startup seeks to take on additional partnerships as well as encourage open-source development via hackathon events.

Amid Teleport’s goal to decentralize ridesharing as an alternative option to Uber, Bohm also seeks to achieve another noteworthy cause. This is to have the protocol governed by numerous disparate entities and no longer by DEC.

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